For the most part, small claims court is used to settle cases that involve nominal monetary disputes. The allowable limit on the amount that is in dispute varies by state. However, it is usually within the $3,000 to $10,000 range. In New York, the maximum amount of monetary damages that can be disputed or awarded in small claims court is $5,000.
According to www.nolo.com, "Assuming the other party lives or does business in your state, rules normally require that you sue in the small claims court district closest to that person's residence or headquarters. In some instances, you also may be able to sue in the location (court district) where a contract was signed or a personal injury occurred (such as an auto accident). Check with your small claims clerk for detailed rules."